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Morning Joe

News/Business. Interviews with newsmakers and politicians; host Joe Scarborough. New.

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Washington 23, China 20, Us 19, America 16, Marco Rubio 12, Joe 11, United States 11, North Korea 10, Cokie 9, Bill Clinton 7, Chris Matthews 7, Ted Nugent 6, Usaa 6, U.s. 6, Ronald Reagan 5, Chuck Hagel 5, Pentagon 5, John Boehner 5, South Korea 5, West Virginia 5,
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  MSNBC    Morning Joe    News/Business. Interviews with newsmakers  
   and politicians; host Joe Scarborough. New.  

    February 12, 2013
    3:00 - 6:00am PST  

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bring out chicken broccoli alfredo. or best-ever meatloaf. go to campbellskitchen.com for recipes, plus a valuable coupon. campbell's. it's amazing what soup can do. at the top of the show we asked you why are you awake? john tower has the nonmusical
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interest. >> i'm getting ready for tonight's drinking game. take a shot every time the network shows ted nugent. >> all right. one other thing we got, a tweet yesterday said he was up because he was waiting to determine the gender of his child. he determined it's a boy! that deserves three exclamation points and a happy face. congratulations. we're as excited as you are, at least close to it. thanks for watching. john tower, thank you. "morning joe" right next door starts right now. ♪ >> this is a man of great integrity and looking out for what he believes is the best interest of our church. i admire him for it. i think it's been 713 or so years since any's ever done that. i think he sets an inextricably
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high standard. >> good morning. it's tuesday, february the 12th, and our expert, cokie rockets, tells us it's fat tuesday! who delivers the state of the union on mardi gras? >> somebody who doesn't realize there is a whole population that is not going to watch. >> not going to watch. you can do it on 364 other nights of the year. most of the people that will be on that street tonight, they're not watch iing those either. >> "time" magazine cnn political analyst, mark halperin, and former chairman of the republican national committee and commentator for nbc news and news analysts for npr, cokie rockets. you're wearing purple. >> i am. i am wearing purple and gold and
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beads i left in the makeup room. i'll bring them later. >> i like the beads. >> being a good catholic from norms, you can talk about it. >> i speak pope. >> and your mom was ambassador to the vatican in the '90s. that ain't nothing. >> no. it was quite fabulous. we loved it. got to go to rome all the time. i got to meet the pope then john paul the 2nd. then what happened happened and my mother found herself representing bill clinton to the pope. >> how exciting for her. >> it was a challenge. >> i guess it was. >> e.j. this morning quotes somebody who says the most noted earnize i earnizing -- modernizing thing this pope did was to retire, get out of the way. could it be at this modern age a
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pope just can't afford to be seen frail and weakened in the 24/7 news cycle? are we moving beyond the days? >> i don't think that's necessarily true. john paul felt strongly he wanted the world to see him in a sickened state because that was humanity. that he was setting an example of someone who was frail and feeble and carrying on. i think this pope, you know, has decided to set a different example. we'll see what this precedent means. does it mean future popes have to be pushed out? does he have influence after a new pope is manamed? we're in unchartered waters. >> and in quite a while, we'll see -- >> they have their own camp david. >> with the choicloisted nuns.
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they'll probably get better food. >> the state of the address and the "washington post" talking about the state of the union never really meaning anything, unless you're bill clinton and come in the middle of a scandal with monica lewinsky with a 59% approval rating. i remember the speech and think he went on for 15 hours. i went back to the cloak room and said, tell me when it's over. i slept for an hour, he's got to be done. i go out, he's still going on. his approval ratings jumped 10 percentage points, should have been our clue. brier rabbit, stay away. what can this president do tonight to move his agenda forward in a divided washington? >> i think there's two new elements what he can possibly do and not have a speech annualized and by tomorrow morning we move to other things. one is this new grassroots organization he's building. no president has ever tried
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something like this before. it may not work. the scale is bigger and thought is bigger. if he's able to take the messages he wants and push the agenda he wants to push. >> what's the focus going to be? he doesn't need to waste it on immigration. he will get immigration. >> he says jobs. >> this is his first state of the union in this new term. i'm still thinking even though i don't have hard reporting on it. >> are you going to be optimistic again? if you are, i may just walk off and have some coffee. i'm tired of you being optimistic about him being responsible with entitlements. >> i think he will try to be dynamic. >> that will be great. >> i think he will try to say is if you don't do somethi something -- this is what the white house has been putting out anyway. if you don't do something, it
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will crowd out something else. >> do you think he will actually say that? >> i do. >> that's what i don't understand about liberals. i'm dead serious. it seems to me liberals should want to reform middle class entitlements more than conservatives because when you do that you don't have to steal from medicaid, you don't have to steal from welfare programs, food stamps, for the poorest of americans. cokie, i'm curious what you think, we had paul krugman on and medicare -- he has all these apost apostles, bloggers eating chitos, what we have is conservatives denying science and we have liberals denying math and i don't know what's worse! but it's laughable and they're dead wrong. >> bill clinton said that, when he became president he was appalled his advisors said to him you have to get this deficit
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in check or otherwise you won't be able to do any programs you want to expand. >> he did that. >> you put honest democra democrats -- honest democrats in the white house -- >> because republicans were elected two years later. >> honest democrats in the white house on capitol hill will say we are drawing these lines in the sand because we have to and we're willing to compromise. the question is will republicans be willing to compromise to make a deal that involves democrats taking on some of their own constituencies, i think the president will talk about that. >> let me ask you, what do republicans talk about tonight so they don't look like bob newhart's two cousins in vermont. larry and my brother larry? >> >> daryl and my brother daryl. >> bobby jindal, you put him responding to the president, talk about the greatest home-field advantage and he ends
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up looking like kenneth the page. >> i don't think rubio will look like that or sound like that. i think he will obviously, it will be a play on immigration. it will be hopefully an economic response to the president. to your point, joe, the president has said, we've got to do something about entitlements. the question is what? what are you willing to put on the table? is he going to lay out a specific or some direction towards a specific policy. that's what republicans will look for. more importantly to your question, they have an opportunity to frame this economic argument. you still have 21 million americans unemployed. the rate is still up. you can frame that argument and say to the president, take the laundry list you laid out tonight, give us the bill and we will wait for it in the house and embrace it and work with you and the senate democrats if that's what you want. give us the bill. >> i think the whole speech is going to be in spanish so we
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won't know what he says. >> i can go to sleep much much earlier and wait for the translation. >> talk about a no win situation. that response to the state of the union, i think people should give it up. >> i wasn't being critical of bobby. >> a smart guy but he was terrible. >> it's terrible. >> the property comes in, flags behind him, george washington on one side, lafayette on the other, everybody's cheering, it's great. then there's some guy with teleprompter in the room. it doesn't work. >> then you have rand paul coming in. will he look at the right camera tonight? >> that says look here. >> how many times did the washington generals beat the globetrotters? >> they never do. >> only -- bets on the washington general. >> i think he'll be more than fine. i think he'll do what eric cantor did, republicans one
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thing they seemed to have learned since the election, you have to talk about the real lives of real people and connect your policies up to do that. that's the thing marco rubio is best at. >> i think the great thing for the republicans tonight is you have two people that support immigration reform that will be talking tonight. we got hammered. mitt romney would have been president. >> rand paulgiving the tea party response to the president. >> you have marco rubio giving a response to the president and rand paul giving the response to the response to america. does this make sense to any having a bifurcated message? you will have two images in contrast to the united states, as cokie very well put out the grandeur of the well of the congress. >> we're a split party.
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>> we are. the point is supposed to be unifying around common sense themes and ideas. >> right now, we have half of the party, who is like the conservative movement from '60 to '64 who decided we would rather lose with gold water or nixon or win with rockefeller. you talk to a lot of people, a lot of my friends say they would much rather lose. >> if that's the modus going forward, advantage obama the next 18 month or so, he will always pivot off this tri fur kated screen. >> and cokie, i know you were in the kindergarten in the '60s so you don't remember this. >> right. >> why don't you compare the republican party where it was from '60 to '68. >> many of the people in the
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conservative movement at the time, it was movement will say, look, we lost in '64, but it laid the groundwork for the reagan victory in '80. that was republican party they would say we were proud of opposed to the weak imitation of the democrats that they considered rockefeller and nixon. they think it was a success. look, if you look right now at where the party is an where the people are, it doesn't add up. talk about math, this -- the republican party is the party of white guys and michael. >> you saw what they did with me. >> white men are 34% of the population. >> and marco rubio. >> you can't make a party of that. you can't do it.
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when registonald reagan was ele in 1980, white men were 46% of the electorate. you could add a few people of color and a few women and get a majority, now, you can't. >> you look at comparisons, michael, between george h.w. bush's tallies and demographics come paired to now. it is a radically different country and moving further away from the republican party of the 1980s. it is a question of what do we do? is it possible this party continues to split apart? >> yeah. i think it's a very real possibility. tonight is a very glaring example of that split. it depends how deep it runs to cokie's point. do we resolve ourselves to get around this quicker general ideas that are principled positions for the party to take or still go through the social conservati conservatives, fiscal
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conservatives, national security conservatives and continue to split this up. i stay there's a common thread. i found it in 2009 and 2010 and we won and cobbled around the coalitions we needed around the country and put those coalitions to work on behalf of a common idea whether health care or the economy. that seems to have dissipated. the rnc has walked away from that, trying to come back with messaging. they're touring a listening tour but they're tone deaf to what's going on out there. the reality, people are telling exactly what they want. just listen to it and do it. >> they make people feel unwelcome in the party. you had marco rubio up on the stage at the republican convention but you also had joe arpaio, the sheriff from arizona who is such an advocate of that immigration law. you have those immigration laws all over the country and people voting for them. you have voting id laws all over the country so people are made to feel unwelcome.
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you combine that with legislate rape and you've got -- you've driven off everybody. m . >> don't forget what virginia tried to pass in the middle of the campaign and see how that helps you in the suburbs of washington. a few hours ago, the state media reported there was a successful media address that coincide coincided with president obama's state of any aounion address tonight. and it's to fight earlier resolutions. we have jim miklaszewski with us. nbc's chief correspondent. what are you hearing at the pentagon. >> officials knew this was coming although they didn't know the exact timing. this one has set off alarm bells, particularly because of the size of the blast. we're not relying on north korea
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claims here. south korea's seismic readings on the blast said it was somewhere about 6 or 7 kilotons, which could make it anywhere from 3 to 6 times more powerful than any previous weapon they set off before. north korea did claim they did this with a much smaller warhead, which would indicate they could be making progress miniaturizing a missile that could be launched at the united states. that's north korea and nobody is taking that seriously at this point and quite frankly, that's impossible to prove. within minutes, it seemed, after the blast was reported, the white house responded and president obama called it a highly provocative act that undermines regional stability and threatens ultimately u.s. national security. the president said it demands swift and credible action by the international community. that's where everything comes to a screeching halt because north
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korea is pretty much sanctioned out at this point. unless china decides to cut off oil supplies and other goods to north korea, it appear there's no stopping the north korean regime at this point. >> what's china's response? immediate neighbors to the west. a blast -- if i were china, i'd be a hell of a lot more concerned about them setting off nuclear devices than in the united states. look at the map, they're literally in the shadow of china? any response from china or belief inside the pentagon or this administration china will eventually step up and start exerting more pressure on the north koreans to become a more responsible state? >> one of the biggest fears in that region is it will spark some kind of regional nuclear arms race. both south korea and japan in
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the past have threatened to start developing their own nuclear weapons. no signs they're doing that yet. we go back to china. the only thing that might make this a little bit different is china leaned heavily on north korea not to conduct this test. for north korea to do this is like in your face beijing. there may be a more aggressive response from china but nobody is counting on that. this should once and for all dash any hopes this international community had this 29-year-old kim jong un would be different from his father, kim jong il. despite the fact he was educated in switzerland, had exposure to the west and much more exposed publicly than his father ever was, he appears hell bent developing nuclear weapons and missile technology that could some day reach the united
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states. nobody is shivering in their boots at the pentagon yet but they're on track to do that. >> it could be a game changer in four words you don't like to say if you want too stay in power, in your face, beijing. if china is telling them not to do this, maybe the dynamic changes this time. >> and they had warned them publicly in advance, there is a u.n. national security meeting and all eyes are on them and what they do there and south korea election coming up and incredible concern on the part of the pentagon and intelligence community and that there are ties between north korea and iran not just on the cluck lar program but missile programs as well. >> it comes at a time we are in the mist of chandst of changingd states national team and going out and saying it's a weak team. it's a scary moment. >> thanks for being with us.
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straight ahead, senator joe manchin on set and valerie jarrett, senior advisor to the president will be here and gene sp sperling and eugene robinson and the nbc political dream team. that's what they call these three people when they're like in a bar drinking together. david gregory, chris matthews and chuck todd. up next, nobody has ever accused him of being part of any dream team, jim vandehei. and up next, bill karins with the forecast. will we have another snowstorm this weekend? >> first we have snow around syracuse, buffalo, rochester, new york, a little bit of snow for burlington, vermont. this is probably the nicest day for much of the week. d.c. is gorgeous, 53 and sunny. through the 40s and
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massachusetts. and hopefully all the plow driver drivers will still get to some roads they haven't plowed yet. today is mardi gras. watching a lot of rain in the deep south. we had rainy days three days in a row now. charleston to new orleans. and other trouble spots, joining us from north texas or oklahoma, a snowstorm. amarillo is snowing now. it will head to oklahoma city a little earlier today and later shift over to snow. winter storm warnings and advisories. oklahoma city, i think you will end up with 2 to 3 inches of snow. back to i-40, probably as much as 6 inches and could probably shut down the highway. joe was asking the upcoming weekend. yesterday, i was saying there will be a big storm, there is still going to be a big storm. the trend is to kick it offshore
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and it could have minimal effects and looking better yesterday than at this time. a lot of rainy weather in the deep south. you're watching "morning joe," we're brewed by starbucks. ♪ if loving you is wrong
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waving. >> time to look at our morning papers. the chicago tribune, gun violence is going to be a major focus of tonight's state of the union speech. first lady, michelle obama will be joined by the parents of 15-year-old hadiya pendleton gunned down days after performs at the president's inauguration festivities. yesterday, two gang members were charged in the honor students' murder. they say they mistook her friend for a rival. ted nugent will be attending the state of the union address as a guest of steve stockman. he said last year if the president won election i will either be dead or in jail by this time next year. secret service again, ted nugent, the motor city madman.
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on a side note, the congressman inviting him said he will be fact checking the president's speech live on twitter to t the #you liked. today, a news supplement reveals labels may be misleading. what a surprise, researchers who tested vitamin d pills found they contain ed eed a percent amount and many people in america take vitamins. i never understood take vitamins, take vitamins, just eat right. any vitamin freaks on the set? >> i actually take b vitamins for bad hands. >> bad hands. >> bad hands. >> so if i get bad hands -- >> b vitamins. >> pop tarts have all the vitamins. >> they do. that with captain crunch and crunch berries, all the
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essential vitamins. with us now, the political playbook, jim vandehei. this is a huge day, you have the president's state of the union address and mardi gras begins. >> it actually ends. >> it ends. >> we've been having mardi gras since the epiphanies. >> it ends. mardi gras ends. fat tuesday. it's your birthday. it. >> is my birthday. >> happy birthday. >> how are you going to celebrate it tonight? >> by working until about 11:00 tonight. living large at 42, joe. >> living large at 42. you're so young. "politico" has a piece up talking about how difficult it will be for the president to keep all the promises he makes tonight. talk about it. >> a good cautionary tale where the last state of the union the president said he would go after the wall street firms that had packaged together these toxic mortgages and sold them at a profit as investment vehicles
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and promised to bring prosecutors in and round these guys up and do something about it and basically did nothing. the justice department hardly went after the banks or wall street firms. a lots of democratic friends of the president complained the justice department sat on its hands too worried about economic consequences of going after wall street when the economy was not doing well. it just shows you will hear big promises in the speech tonight. we hear it every year, very few of those actually happen. >> these are laundry lists. >> right. they are laundry lists. mark's point about the grassroots organization is the interesting thing. what happens after the speech is more important than the speech itself. if in fact the president is able to get the people who turned out for him in the election and who were on social media and working the other young people get out to vote, if he can get them
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lobbying basically what he's saying, turn them all into a bunch of lobbyists, that will be something to behold. >> the problem is the president has to use this operation not to go after republicans in the house, i'm dead serious, go after moderate to conservative democrats in the senate up for re-election in 2014, that reside in states that mitt romney carried overwhelmingly. if you're talking about guns, that's the challenge, talking about immigration. >> north carolina. >> want to talk about raising more taxes in north carolina, lots of luck. it's not going to happen. west virginia, it's not going to happen. >> color me skeptical, i think it's really hard to get people, ordinary americans to get engaged any time other than a presidential election, the reason turnout is so bad in off-year elections. i'm really skeptical this army of voters will suddenly put pressure on democrats to do things they might not otherwise
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want to do. the test case is gun control. talk about it in the state of the union as we talked about on this show. i'm extremely pessimistic whether anything can be done you look at the republicans and democrats elected officials, there's not a majority that want to do it. it will be a good test case to see if they can use the public pressure, west virginia and harry reid in nevada to do things they might not otherwise want to do. i'm extremely skeptical. people have tried this in the past. no doubt the obama folks have a better organization and social media gives you advantages you didn't have in the past but they're trying to do something i have not seen signs they are willing to do in a non-presidential election. >> i do think, michael steele, the republicans will see the president talk on guns tonight and see the victims of newtown. i think that's going to cut through.
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we've all had these moments and said the union addresses ab had these moments and maybe there won't be an assault weapon ban and maybe won't go after thes a 99 high capacity magazines. but republicans will have a hard time saying no to background checks and saying no to gun trafficking laws. if they do say no to these items that are 9010s, we used to go around the hill saying it's 8020, 80-20 negative. if it's 80-20, that train's coming an you get out of the way. this is 90-10. my question is will republicans be stupid enough to follow the extremist wing of the nra, a small portion of the nra membership against the universal background checks and gun trafficking. are we going to be that dumb. >> they used to be for it. >> that's the point. they were for it. >> there's no doubt about it.
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there are some who will tow that particular line. the vast majority the way you framed it is how the president frames it tonight. he will have these folks victims of gun violence in the audience. the image of newtown swear in the center of that hall. a lot of republicans, you can see the cameras now focused on the faces of those individual members and the country will watch them squirm. >> by the way, cokie, a lot of times a liberal president will do that, we will let the applause subside and let everybody in the media go out in manhattan and washington and we'll go back to our office and respond to the people in their district. the people even in my district support universal background checks and end to gun trafficking. >> the thing to watch for is women in congress. in 1994, when they passed the
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assault weapons ban. i agree with you, there won't be an assault weapons ban passed, when they start voting on these other issues, 29% of republican men voted for the assault weapons ban but 62% of women did. the same thing on the democratic side, i think it was something like 72% of democratic men voted for it and 89% of democratic women. >> this is huge. it is a hugedy vide on the issue. >> we now have 80 women in the house and 20 in the senate. i think it's something to watch. >> jim vandehei, back when the assault weapons ban passed in 1984, the man who made it happen, ronald wilson reagan, by lobbying republican moderates afraid to support the assault weapon ban. reagan weighed in and made the difference. tonight, they have to decide whether they want to be the party of ronald reagan or wayne lapierre. >> i'm not sure ronald reagan
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could get elected today. >> there's no doubt ronald reagan would support universal background checks. who doesn't support universal background checks? who doesn't support the end of gun trafficking? you know who doesn't support it? people inside the little republican bubble in the house of representatives and some democrats who are scared, jim. the numbers are overwhelming. this is a 90-10 issue now. >> thick wh i think what the pr wants to do with this speech tonight is continue to make republicans look cartoonish with gun control. what they would like to see tomorrow are images of victims you just painted sitting in the chamber side by side with representative stockman and ted nugent and whatever they will say after the speech and you know they will say extremely -
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ex-send yex the things that ted nugent will say. >> it plays into the president's hand. i always talk about we republicans having to win not northwest florida where i'm from. we will always win there. we have to win in the i-4 corridor and suburbs of philadelphia. we have to win in northern virginia and why virginia has a republican governor this year and won't have a republican governor next year and we have to win in columbus, ohio. ted nugent and steve stockman help you lose those areas, they just do. if i'm the president of the united states -- >> hoping the camera is on them. >> nonstop about universal background checks 90-10 and gun trafficking, 90-10. >> it's easy. >> or domestic violence or immigration, any of these things that appeal to most americans. >> jim, happy birthday to you.
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>> thanks very much. >> it's abe lincoln's birthday. >> today is abe lincoln's birthday as well? my goodness. which one of these things is not like the other. abraham lincoln, r.g. 3 and and jim. >> jim vandehei is malice for all. >> which one is not like the other? >> we will be talking to senator mike lee what he expects from tonight's address and senior contributor from "the caller," matt lewis. [ male announcer ] this is bob, a regular guy with an irregular heartbeat. the usual, bob? not today.
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coming up next, we have senator joe manchin of west virginia. he is here. we're going to talk about guns, we're going to talk about the state of the union but most importantly, we will talk about his buddy, nick sabin. well, maybe not. i'd like to. you're watching "morning joe" brewed by starbucks. [ woman ] my boyfriend and i were going on vacation,
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my guess is, if you look at what the president's motives are for picking chuck hagel, i think he wants a republican to be the foil, if you will, for what he wants to do to the defense department which i think is do serious serious damage to our military capabilities. >> here we go. 44 past the hour. >> you could be a little more cheerful. >> i was trying to find the clock. >> you go all right, here we go. we're having a good time. nick sabin is here. be a little more exciting. >> i love him. >> democratic senator from west virginia, member of the senate armed services committee and co-chair of no labels.
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good to have you back on the show way over there. >> you're not used to this set, are you? >> no. i'm adjusting. takes me a while. >> i want to, first of all, joe, you brought some fascinating phrases from the first state of the union. george washington calling for quote adequate provision to support the public credit, providing for the common defense with the due regard to the economy and foreigners admitted to the right of citizens by uniform rule of naturalization. the first one. also talks about, i guess, good chee cheer. >> i thought there should be a bipartisan effort and wanted to bring a greeting of good cheer and bringing people together and open to talking to all sides. >> that sounds good. we could use a little of that. >> then the congress convened and had an immediate fight over congressional pay. >> thy good year ended. >> joe, what are you hoping to hear tonight? >> i hope you want to hear that
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spirit of bipartisan. we want to come together and the leader sets that tone. i'm hoping to hear that. >> it's one thing to hear that but how do you execute it in this climate? >> when you're in that position, you keep taking a thumbing everyday to try to bring people together and don't give up. this country is too good and the people of this country deserve a lot better than they've been getting from us. i think we can produce better. there's a difference. republicans saying we don't have a revenue problem we have a spending and democrats saying we don't have a spending problem we have a revenue. we have both. >> we do. we have a consensus. people say america's divided. america's not divided. they like america's tax policy and democrats spending policy. we're screwed! it's that simple. >> numbers don't add up. >> last year, $220 billion was
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spent on interest on our debt. if we continue down this road by 2022 we will have $550 billion spent just on debt. >> by the way, that's assuming interest rates stay at historic lows. if interest rates go up to what they've been historically, suddenly, $220 billion becomes 700, 800, $1 trillion. the numbers keep adding up? . it's not good. let's talk about guns as well. there are two a rated guys from the nra. i'm not sure they'd invite us back as long as wayne lapierre is running the joint. the thing i found, joe, at least in my district and among my conservative hunting friends, is agreement, almost total agreement on background checks. by the way, a lot of guys that own gun shops, they want the universal background checks, too. >> they want to close the gun show loophole. >> they want to close the gun
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show loophole. the biggest gun shop owners want that. >> % of americans supporting background economi background checks for all gun buyers. in my district. this should be simple when it's ha 90-10 issue. >> i'm working in a bipartisan fashion with senators on both sides of the aisle. the ability to do it in a timely fashion, you think, can we get a portal? can we get a website? can it be done online? would that help the individual transfer? it's criminal background economi checks. criminal background checks are less offensive to a person, i'm okay with that, i'm not a criminal. i'm a law abiding person.
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that's where most americans are. >> they've got internet. >> i hear. >> outside the east coast, mika, they have internet. we could set up a system, if i want to sell a gun to you, it would allow us to figure out a way to make sure i do that or else i would face severe penalty. >> this sounds all so simple, doesn't it. those polls may say one thing but you've met gun owners and they're scared one thing leads to another leads to another. how due develop a trust in diehard gun owners in your state and across the country really pushing back at what they think is an infringe on their rights. >> what you're seeing basically is distrust of government across the board. we don't have a good record of finding the sweet spot, either go too far to try to overcorrect. they think that's only the first step, once they get that background check, they want
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registration and identification and knowing where it is. i keep telling them as a person who is going to protect the second amendment as strong as anybody, that's not going to happen. >> you're getting hammered? >> i don't know. in west virginia, we're used to a good tug-of-war every now and then. >> sounds like the answer is yes. >> i think people understand, they know i've always been a gun owner. i enjoy hunting and enjoy the sport of it. i was taught at a young age to be responsible and be safe. with all that being said, i think there's more people like me in america than people being portrayed in the other light. with that being said, i don't have a fear. i think we call it common sense, nonsense, we should have gun sense. >> let's talk about chuck hagel. you're on the armed services committee. we're fans of chuck, i like chuck, like his foreign policy. he's a realist, not a neo con
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and he turned in one of the worst performances on capitol hill. i will be the first to admit it. could have been better said the washington redskins when they lost 73-0. could have been better and i think chuck will be the first to admit that. are you going to support him? >> yes, i am. >> why? >> he's real. really real. he's been through war, been on the front line and been wounded. i asked him is there anything you can give me to doubt you wouldn't do anything to defend this country and america. >> you're talking about iran and -- >> i'm talking everything. he gave me a very satisfactory answer. his actions of spoken for that. also on israel. we were concerned about israel and iran. he gave two very strong answers on that. i have no doubt he would do everything he can to protect our country and fight for it and draw basically strong with our allies with israel. i feel comfortable with him and
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i hope he would be confirmed. >> you think he will be? >> i think he will be. i think at the end of the day. you know what, the preside president -- they keep saying charges is chuck hagel. >> chuck hagel is coming in as part of team. the president sets the tone. you should give the executive a chance to put their team together whether you agree or disagree. it won't be chuck hagel being held accountable, the president of the united states. he's won that right through a second election and hope we give him that opportunity. >> most importantly, alabama, nick sabin, your recruiting buddy. >> tough in the living room, may be good on the ball field but even better than the living room. >> always good to be with y'all. >> coming up, chris matthews and al hunt and chuck todd from the white house. keep it live right here on "morning joe." [ male announcer] surprise -- you're having triplets.
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tomorrow, senator tom coburn will be on the show. up next, chris matthews and al hunt on the set on washington. more on "morning joe" when we come back.
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welcome back to "morning joe." michael steele is still with us in washington and joining us al hunt and the host of msnbc's "hardball" and author of "jack kennedy" elusive hero, chris matthews. >> hi. >> good to have you here. >> tonight at 9:00 p.m., president obama will deliver his
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s state of the union address, a peach that will focus on his agenda the next four years. >> madame speaker. >> the president of the united states. >> it's a tradition as old as the office, the president's annual declaration of the state of the union, a constitutionally mandated opportunity for the president to lay out his vision for the nation. >> despite our hardships, our union is strong. >> the state of our union is strong. >> our resolve is firm. and our union is strong. >> my fellow americans, the state of our union is strong. >> harry truman was any first president to deliver his state of the union on television. lyndon johnson brought the address to primetime. >> we're in the midst of the greatest upward surge of economic well-being in the history of the nation. >> only 16 presidents delivered a second term sta"state of the
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union" address and tonight, president barack obama will face a difficult political landscape. some historians call it the second term curse and like boston's curse of the bambino, it has dogged leaders for the past century. richard nixon called for working together in his 1974 address, one year after his landslide re-election. >> i want you to know that i have no intention whatever of ever walking away from the job that the people elected me to do for the people of the united states. >> instead, two months later, nixon owned up to his role in watergate and eventually resigned. ronald reagan was swept into a second term with an historic 49 state landslide. >> there are no constraints on the human mind, no walls around the human spirit, no barriers to our progress except those we ourselves erect. >> but many of his second term domestic plans fell to the wayside as his administration
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was consumed by the iran contra scandal. in 1997 after leading americans through four years of economic growth, president bill clinton promised something that hasn't been done in three decades. >> we must keep our economy the strongest in the world. we here tonight have an historic opportunity. let this congress be the congress that finally balances the budget. >> with the help of congress, he did, despite his own self-inflicted political wounds. tonight, another second term president stares down political ghosts of the past, hope to find a new way forward for an uncertain nation. >> her we go. that's the question. can he do it? we'll start with chris matthews, can he bridge the debate. >> he has to be a second term democratic president and focus on jobs and pick a fight you can
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win. immigration you can win. you ain't going to win on guns. do something on background checks and says the liberals will like it ain't going to happen. he can get republicans to put the teeth in immigration and nice stuff on path to citizenship and put the focus back on stimulating jobs and find infrastructure and education and find things that will stimulate our ability or he will not be a successful president. >> i think tonight you will see that, joe. he will talk primarily not only about domestic issues but economic jobs and middle class opposed to domestic production and have four buckets, infrastructure, clean energy and education. it will set a predicate. i'm not sure how important it will be come march or april. i still think he has a real challenge, can get immigration through. this fiscal situation we face a sequester everybody thinks is awful in only two weeks. i don't see anything happening
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to avoid that right now. i think he'll get blamed for that ultimately. they say the republicans will. if the defense department is in real trouble, the president gets blamed. >> by the way, six months from now when the job numbers are still sputtering along, not like they're going to look at john boehner and say, this is john boehner's fault because 80% of americans don't know who john boehner is. >> he has one great asset, joe, the republicans. >> one asset the republicans have. >> there is that. >> the democrats. it's the circle of life. >> exactly. >> the circle of life. >> every time a party seems to be moving towards total domination they overreach. now, you have democrats in the strongest position they've been in quite some time. you have nancy pelosi going on the air this weekend, chris, we don't have a spending problem and other democrats talking about medicare is not a problem.
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basically, like republicans denying science, you know have democrats denying math and talking about more tax increases and plays into a type that helps republicans. >> let me phrase that differently. each party that its reason to exist. if we didn't have the democratic party, we wouldn't have social security, medicare and medicaid. the republican party is into debt reduction, "law & order" in the old days, defense. democrats really don't focus on that. that's not the reason they get elected. nobody runs for office as a democrat saying i want to run for office to reduce the national debt. they have to share things. i think they can work together. the republican party has to do enforcement and say, we will make sure no more people will come hopping across the border next week. wilt stop. everybody will get papered, all on the books, straight up. no more this game of who can get
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across the border tonight. i think the democrats will never do that, in a million years will they get serious about the border or background -- what do you call them, work permits. e verification. they can work together. republicans be the tough cop and republicans be t republicans -- democrats be the good cops and they can work together. i'm asking president obama to lead the way. do it. we'll back you up. >> asking about entitlement programs, republicans can make sure the math adds up over time and democrats make sure there's not a radical change in the way people receive their benefits. 92 that sounds easy to talk about. obviously it can't be done. i wonder, michael steele, when you look at for example lindsey graham on "face the nation" and some republicans really the front lines, especially on a pr level in terms of speaking for the republican party, what could this president say they would say, okay, i want to accept his
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invitation and go to the white house right now and work on a temporary deal or even a big deal? is there anything? i can't think of anything. >> i don't know what this president can say. i think the president framed the answer to that question very well, how come they can never say yes. i think getting to that point where republicans feel they can actually say yes in the context of getting something done, as chris has outlined is very difficult. i think the well is so poisoned and so polarized at this point. >> why is it? >> i think it goes back to couple things. one, the lack of any real relationship between the white house and the leadership on the hill. i think the early days of the administration, one of the first meetings when the president says to the leadership, well, i won, deal with it, kind of attitude, really set the tone. i think also on the day of the inauguration in 2009 you have republicans in their little kabals saying we will make this
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guy a one time president. everybody started from their extreme polar position with no idea or direction to move to a consensus around the big issues whether it's the economy, it was then and still is, and now we have these other sub-stories that rolled into the scene, whether, you know, welfare reform, education reform, the like. no one really knows what the consensus point is. what's the sweet spot to get to this. >> al, a speaker can't change that culture himself. a majority leader can't do that. minority leader can't do that. i think we would all assume growing up the president is the indispensable man who could do that but can even the president, any president, this president change the culture of washington in this climate with 3 1/2 years to go? >> i think it's very difficult. you do it selectively, joe. you do the best you can do.
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poor john boehner's problems are illustrated by the fact there are two responses tonight to the president's state of the union, not just marco rubio. >> i was asking michael. is that because the republican party is right now hopelessly divided? >> i think it happened a couple years ago when michele bachmann and paul ryan did it. this is a continuation of that. clearly, it's divided. half of john boehner's caucus' never j into denial, into nullification about elections and about obama and i think probably half the caucus would say if we could come up with something we'd do it. that's awful tough for him. >> chris, can you imagine a member of the house trying tip o'neill, hey, listen, i tell you what, you have your democratic respon response, the progressives really, we'll get up there. tip, we really need -- try passion that by jack murphy. >> savage.
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>> let me go back to this. no parties have common interests with other parties but they have dual interests. republicans want this monkey off their back being the bad guy to immigration, want the path to citizenship. they don't want to do it but want it done so people don't keep vote iing democrat because they're hispanic. you have to stop this. you can't keep losing to hispanic growing in population and win general elections. you can't. all they want to do is get a situation where they get partial credit putting this in the past, allow people to become citizens. why don't they want a bill? why don't they work together? >> they're going to. >> i think it will happen. >> what about guns? >> i am a skeptic. gun owners, they're great vote, vote consistently, vote on one issue, everybody else, i think i'll do climate change, education tonight, people's minds topic shifts from one topic to the other, gun owner's
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minds don't shift, stay on one issu issue. >> what about background check. >> that can happen. 90-10. >> and i don't know why they're talking about assault weapons. i don't know what manchin is doing talking about it. they can't vote for it. >> you talk to michael bloomberg and other people focusing on this issue, they will tell you assault weapons is more symbolic than anything. if you get the your honounivers background checks or stop trafficking, you take care of a lot of the handguns. if you can get magazines, there is a possibility of a consensus. >> i don't think bloomberg would sell well out west. a big state guy with 16 ounce drinks, saying get out of my face. >> but you do understand all
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those guns end up in his city and he does have a leg to stand on. >> one thing that always happened in the past, once gun control was joined, everybody was for gun control and then the other side dominated. this time a little bit different whether michael bloomberg and gabby giffords but money matters. you may not think 16 ounce drinks do but -- >> you know what else matters. newtown matters. tonight will matter. kids will matter. >> what will get passed? >> universal background checks will get passed. if it doesn't get passed now, republicans will lose, a lot of republicans will lose in 2014. it's a 90-10 issue and i think trafficking will get passed. >> i think 16 ounce drinks will kill you, too, thank you, mayor bloomberg. >> i'll take my chance with a slurpee. >> look at chris. he doesn't believe me. you keep drinking them. >> you know, i think we reached agreement here with all this
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scuffling. background checks, trafficking, probably not assault weapons. >> probably not assault weapons. so, al, let me ask you, "washington post" wrote an article this morning and reminded me what you said before the debate bess gas began. you said presidential debates don't matter. i don't know if you still believe that after the president's first debate this year. do you still think presidential debates don't matter? >> i think they matter but conventions matter more than debates. >> this one really mattered. >> really, in both instances. showing that first debate mattered that was so dreadful. he recovered from it. his lead in the polls at the end -- >> state of the union, do they matter. the "washington post" has a great article says unless you're bill clinton in the middle of a sex scandal. for bill clinton, he goes up 10
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points and republicans found out he could rob a bank and go up. >> the last time a state of the yunion when george bush made a catastrophic mistake that was negative so they can be negativ negative. >> chuck todd joins the conversation. what do you think the big take away will be tonight and will he be able to move the meter with republicans and work with them. >> reporter: to answer your question first, this is the last shot he has to move the needle. second terms domestically 18 months in recent history shows that's the case, whether you look at reagan or clinton or bush, they only had a small window to get anything done and their second terms domestically came to an abrupt end, scandal with reagan and clinton and katrina with bush.
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under that circumstance, that's why there's a little more pressure on the fraugpresident have an effective window. this is the window if he's ever going to motivate congress to do it. his whole second term on the economy is determined how march goes. not legislative fight with bush about selling social security. for obama, it's simply, can he get past the march and budget impasse? if he does, maybe he can get immigration done and a few other things done. if he doesn't, everything else gets stopped up. like a drain. he's trying to snake the drain and the budget impasse is this big ball of hair. >> wow! >> reporter: how's that for a visual at 7:00. people are getting ready in the morning and their sink is filling up. >> hairballs. quite an image.
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but a great point made before that unfortunate image. this really may be his last great shot. this time next year, peel will be gearing up for the off-year election and after the off-year election, i remember after the off-year election in '98, i said, okay, that esit for two years, we won't get anything done here. for the most part, that's right. everybody starts waiting for the next guy or woman. this may be the last clean shot he has at changing the dynamic in a dramatic way. >> it is. >> i even asked, is this going to feel like a clinton state of the union, remember the clinton state of the union, you had to sit there, joe, it would be a laundry list, issue after issue. >> sleep. >> and i'm told there will be more focus but not one that goes
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nuclear. goes everywhere. >> the president is very self confident obviously for his benefit and liability at certain times. i think his problem is underreaching right now. you think of the cheapness of capital right now, inexpensive to borrow money, why not major effort in infrastructure. i know it's a boring word but major rebuilding of america. >> i agree with you. >> it could be transportation and sewers and everything where there's real construction to be done, brick and mow tartar. i was talking to dick, dianne feinstein's husband, you can basically borrow a trillion dollars, $30 trillion, huge amounts of money up and put it in huge construction, not big city leaders and to the system that wastes itself but actual
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construction that really is a capital budget. i think he missed a chance. maybe you need a lockbox. this is only going go construction. unions will love it, especially the construction trades and you really do something. this president is a democrat and not doing what democrats normally do, create jobs. i think it's a big underreach. nite goes back to something cokie said before, forever the president takes care of entitlement programs, if he takes care of the big issues with republicans over the next 20 years or so, that frees up so much capital to worry about infrastructure, education, r&d, the poor. you're talking about 10, 11, 12% of the budget tops. if you talk about discretionary domestic spending, taking care of medicare, preserving medicare, social security over the long hall frees the president up to do some pretty great things. >> it does. first, i think he will do something on infrastructure.
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it may not be quite as big as you like. i think there will be. it brings together labor, not just jobs, business. the chamber of commerce and alco does agree about business. whether you do it one year or 10 years, what's awful about this sequester all of it comes out of discretionary spending. that's crazy, whether defense or domestic. the major part ought to bes and a teeny bit. >> our republican leader said it yesterday, it was great to hear him say that. what's happening, we have both sides raiding 12% of the budget because they're afraid to touch the other 88%. >> chuck todd. >> reporter: yes, ma'am. >> final thoughts. we're wrapping up the segment and try and leave it away from here. >> reporter: coughing it up. one thing i'm told tonight that
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he's going to do, he will present all the economics through the prism of three questions, how do you create jobs? how do you educate for those jobs and how do you keep folks in those jobs, how do you get them to make a decent living? that's what i'm told will make it a more organized version of state of the union and unlike the laundry list state of the union s, i had been getting this feeling over the past couple of weeks, various leaks this will feel like a '90s flashback, the whole everything will get thrown into there but there is a focus of this state of the union unlike a clinton one. >> thank you, chuck and chris matthews as well. watching the state of the union on msnbc. it will be a long one for you. al hunt up and valerie jarrett joins us live from the white house. and the moderator of "meet the press," david gregory and
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together, we have grown as a nation. from infancy to adulthood. we've grown up. not unlike that clydesdale from the budweiser super bowl commercial. farm farmer's in his car, looks in the rear view mirror, and there's the horse. there's the horse racing toward him, in a frantic -- in a frantic gallop, and they reunite. they embrace. the horse newsles the man's face, as if to say, thank you. and all the while, stevie nix is
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singing that song, landslide in the background ♪ well i've been afraid of change i changing ♪ ♪ because i built my life around ♪ >> oh, my. with us now from the white house. that was funny. senior advisor to president obama. i wonder if she thought that was funny, valerie jarrett. hi. >> i did think it was funny, yes, mika. i think the president -- i think if the president actually carries a much better tune than that. >> yes. >> you know, you're right. you're absolutely right. here on set, we have the moderator of "meet the press," david gregory and pulitzer prize winning columnist and msnbc political analyst, eugene robinson and al hunt is back with us at the table.
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in the past, the president said things like he wants peaceful collaboration and being able to talk together. >> that's great. i like talking together. >> those are good ideas. >> how then does he develop a message tonight that actually carries that out? >> i think his message this evening will be one that resonates broadly with the american people. he always looks forward to have the opportunity to speak directly to the american people and congress with whom he is determined to work. the message is one about building the middle class from the inside-out opposed to the top down. that was the central theme of his 2008 campaign and what he did during his first term and certainly debated in the last election and it will be described in ways how will we equip the united states to have a robust economy to bring manufacturing back? how will we make sure our workforce is prepared for those jobs and how do you make sure if you work hard you can earn a
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good living. i think he will set forward very concretely how to do that in manufacturing and education and infrastructure and energy. that's a message that should resonate very broadly around our country and he's very much looking forward to it. >> valerie, the president is running out of time. i know he has four years. >> i was going to say, joe, he just got re-elected. >> i know. as you know -- >> second terms can be tricky. >> that means he gets sworn in and immediately a lame duck. second terms are tricky. even the white house -- we have seen the reports the president understands he doesn't have four years, may have 18 months to two years to really get some.mean g meaningful legislation passed through congress before everybody starts looking forward. what does the president hope to achieve in tonight's speech? does he understand the importance of not just talk though american people but also trying to figure out a way to
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drag congress with him, to get some of these goals done together? >> of course he does, joe. you're right. he does feel that fierce urgency. he has felt that since day one if you think about the situation he inherited four years ago, we had grave challenges ahead. we have taken very specific steps to move our country forward, created over 6 million jobs in the last 35 months. i think tonight he will speak directly to the american people about what he wants to do. he knows in order to do that, he needs the cooperation of congress and is determined to move with congress and move our country forward. we do face great challenges. >> there's been a feeling that the president's take an harder line. he said it to me and others that he doesn't think that a lack of
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bipartisanship is both sides' fault equally. he thinks it's disproportionately the fault of republicans. from the lame duck campaign, driving a hard bargain has earned him the criticism from republicans who say, look, this is an opportunity to be principled but to look for, as mike murphy said on "meet the press" sunday, a nixon to china moment with republicans. how does he try to do that here over the next several months? >> first of all, i think the president has always reached out, always looked for balanced solutions. i think his solutions are ones the american people support ed and is why he was re-elected but he also recognizes he needs to work with congress. part of our frustration in the first four years, oftentimes seen republicans put their short term political interests ahead of what's in the best interests of the country. one of the things we will do more is engage the american people in that process because
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we think we're stronger with them behind us. they're the ones fighting to have the strong middle class looking for ladders to move into the middle class. with them at our back, i think we will be more effective. that doesn't mean we won't continue to reach out to republicans and democrats to try to tackle these challenges that we have ahead. >> thank you for being on the show this morning. >> you're welcome. nice to see you, too, mika. bye-bye, everybody. >> i don't think valley appreciated me condensing the president's second term in three weeks. >> i don't think so. that was fair game. that was fair game. >> i was picking up on what david has just said regarding mike murphy said sunday, said the president seems to be taking an approach from the state of the union not so much reaching a consensus with the republicans as getting them to yield the danger that mr. obama has little time to waste. even the white house understands second terms are tricky things.
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>> second terms are tricky. i think back to the first term actually. when president obama came into office, part of what he wanted to do was end the sort of -- was change the way we talk about things in washington. not in terms of throwing things at each other but everything's not just left and right. >> right. >> there are other -- >> go back to 2004. yeah. >> whatever. so what i think would be really useful and helpful and positive tonight and perhaps optimistic is some of that. . some new framework or different framework to look at these challenges ahead. frankly, i think we're getting nowhere, if it's just democrat-republican traditional concept of bipartisanship, we are getting nowhere. >> david, if he could figure out a way -- i remember in 2004 in
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boston when he gave the speech, i remember hearing from one of my most conservative friends in 2004. there's no blue america, no red america. he said, uh-oh. we're in trouble. eric cantor said the same thing after meeting barack obama right after he had been elected, saying, you know, if this guy goes down the middle like this, republicans will be out of power for a long time. gene is talking about a game advantager. i knee lot of progressives would be very angry, why work with republicans? very simple because republicans can say, no and get nothing through the house. as galling as it has to be to him, he still has to figure out how to walk that tightrope. >> the dual interest. why is immigration likely to happen? because the president really wants it. he's got a strong part of his political base that wants it and republicans need it. they will figure out how to do it. how about, gene.
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drone policy. you have joe scarborough killing him in the morning on drone policy and rachel maddow and others on the left doing the same thing. these are strange bedfellows. >> united america. >> you have a disparate group. >> even in congress, you have lindsey graham at the president's shoulder over drone policy. that's a national security policy a little more unique. >> it's a fascinating dynamic. >> you're talking about guns and tax, this is all about government. a lot of anti-gun stuff in the country is about the role of government. >> and drones. >> i think this is the same roadblock he keeps running into difficult to surmount, we may not really settle over these eight years, the role of taxes and spending. one of the most interesting conversations i've had is somebody close to the president, been with the president from the very beginning, who said we
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somehow have to get this guy to understand that this is not a question of who's right and who's wrong, and it's not about calling in republicans to explain myoposition is right and i'm going to pull you to my position. this very close friend and supporter and aide of the president, said we don't have time to win this debate. we've got to start making deals. it's almost like they can feel the walls closing in on the president and understand, it's not about who's 100% right, who's 100% wrong, not about being pure as driven snow, it's about doing what fdr did, lbj did, bill clinton did, getting things done. >> it is. when we talked about immigration earlier how that might get done and both sides need it for different reasons. >> can i say on this news set,
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it's almost like you're at the end of a basketball court set talking to me. >> i'm closer to mika now. on taxes and budget, it may be, if they get anything done, it may be because the alternative is so bad. right now, there's no reason for optimism. if they end up with default or end up with sequester, that's so bad they may have to compromise. joe, the question, i think you frame it correctly, i hope he surrounds himself with people who have the skill to do that. ronald reagan did a lot in the first two years of his second term. give reagan all the krin the world but i don't think he would have gotten it done without jim bakker. >> on taxes and budget. i think the president will test every ounce of his political power. doesn't want to force medicare because politics are tough for democrats. he wants to win this argument. he'll make a deal on guns and
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immigration to get something. i feel he wants to test his political skill on taxes. >> the history on budget and tax, there's a history from the white house point of view of the president trying to make a deal, offering a deal and republicans being in a posture of saying, 10-1, theoretically, we won't take it. >> what should he do? >> i think he's got to redefine, rephrase the dialogue, redefine the way we kind of look at these issues and so the orientation, say pick a date, 20 years from now, what's this country going to be 20 years from now and take that reference point as where we want to get. >> david gregory and eugene robinson, thank you very much. coming up, senator marco rubio finds resistance within his own party with immigration. we'll talk to one senator who says he can't support a pathway to citizenship under any circumstances on "morning joe" when we come back. [ female announcer ] going to sleep may be easy, but when you wake up
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okay. coming up, we have a lot to talk about. >> we have mike lee coming in. >> my gracious. >> senator mike lee will come in
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and we will ask him whether he's getting swept up in the excitement. >> look. >> i can tell the senator, you can look and see he's getting swept up in the excitement of -- >> the moment. >> the immigration reform talk sweeping washington d.c. we will talk about that. >> aren't you excited to have this discussion? >> this is marco rubio for president. when we come back.
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mr. president, some of us are not stupid. the state of the union is not goo good. >> the state of our party is not good. >> not good. not good at all, as my dad would say. >> representative michele bachmann and herman cain delivered the tea party responses to the president's state of the union. rand paul will be the voice of the tea party and here to weigh in on the senator's speech and senator rubio's rebuttal. senator from you saw, senator mike lee and contributor of the daily column and columnist, matt lewis. and al hunt is still here. >> al, talking about the good old days, talking about twitter and he's talking about the good old days when he first got into washington, pony express bring
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something from washington to new york. >> stagecoach. >> so fast, it's unbelievable. i'm looking through my twitter feed as i always do in the morning and the next president of the united states hanging out at the biltmore hotel in miami. marco rubio, time calls him savior of the republican party, a lot of talk about this immigration bill. can you support the rubio immigration bill? >> i support probably 75 or 80% of what's in it. there's a lot of good things in that approach. i do think we need secure the border. i definitely think we need to fix legal immigration because we made legal immigration so difficult people choose the illegal option instead. >> what don't you -- let's talk about the pathway to citizenship. do you agree with that? >> i think the pathway prinesen some problems. we're allowing people who have been here illegally through that proposal. i have to say we don't know
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exactly what it's going to say. what it indicates so far we take people here illegally and put them in the 39 become citizens. that causes some heartburn. i think we ought to allow them come in on a non-immigrant visa fist and one way or another fix the immigration system snooimts be gradual but we can get there. >> do you think the press is getting swept up in the sight of passing an immigration bill because the press for the most part supports the immigration bill. do you think it's a harder slog than predicting? >> i think the ghosts of 2006 are still caught up in congress and a lot of people caught up in 2006 over comprehensive illegal immigration reform may still find those same wounds are aliv alive. >> matt, do you agree with that? when george w. bush was talking about this and you were here, everybody saying it was going to pass, a fete accompli.
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subtly -- >> it's not just going back to 2006, two years ago, mitt romney effectively demagogued the immigration issue and helped finish off rick perry and newt gingrich with it. >> and mitt romney with the general election getting 22% of the hispanic vote. >> there's two different issues. should republicans pursue immigration reform? i think they should. there's almost this tragedy of the commons thing happening in the house, if you're a member of congress, you're incentives are different than if a member of the house, your incentives are different than the republican brand, but it is inagreediblely dangerous to talk about it and it is risky, but he is doing the right thing. >> sorry marco rubio the savior? >> stop it. >> you know how i know he's a
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great politician and reaganesque? after "time" magazine put that on there, he said there is only one savior and it ain't me. >> i didn't see it that way, actually. >> say it for the clarification. >> it was needy. >> i thought it was humble. i thought so. >> really? >> i thought it was segas iou s. you have to be humble. >> you have to be humble. >> it should be. >> let's talk about another issue the president will bring up tonight. newtown is going to be discussed. a lot of parents of children killed in newtown. chris matthews and everybody on the set agreed, it's not going to be an assault weapon ban
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passed. probably high capacity magazines are not going to be passed. what about the universal background checks? what about the gun trafficking out there with bipartisan support? is there a possibility those could be passed? >> it's hard to say. a lot of us when we look at that and universal background checks, they believe it's hard to make them work unless you have universal gun registration. >> why can't you divide those two things where i can check and make sure you are not a felon and you don't have a mental condition that makes it dangerous without me tracking the gun. >> unless you track and register the gun, it will be hard to know whether you are covering a significant portion of the sales. that's one concern raised that
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it will lead or require. >> i think you are right. you can have somebody purchase a gun and have it with thorough and have that person transfer the gun. >> have it stolen. >> if somebody knows they will illegally traffic guns to a convicted felon or somebody that shouldn't be having it, you catch them on the other side too. this is a 90-10 issue. do you think -- we know that most republican voters and most gun owners support a universal background check and gun trafficking laws. do you see the senate republicans and the house republicans moving on these two issues that are 90-10 issues? >> i don't know. i think there will be intense push back because among
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conservatives, with the background checks the next step is universal registration and the next step they fear is confisication. >> that's like ted nugent. >> i don't oppose them, but i don't think they are panacea. they could have worked them in tucson, but wouldn't have made a difference in aurora and newtown. you have people taking this tragedy and admitted it and trying to push through legislation that probably wouldn't help. >> it probably would have. do you support any changes to gun laws? >> i haven't seen a law or proposal i'm excited about and would necessarily solve these problems. when people abuse rights to harm other people, the solution is not necessarily restricting the
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rights of the law-abiding and that is what happens when we restrict the rights. i'm open to consider a bill, but i haven't seen one yet i'm excited about. >> thank you very much for being with us. we appreciate you dropping by. matt, great to see you. >> stay off twitter. >> i'm addicted. the kids love me. >> the message on jobs. the director of the white house national economic counsel gene sperling joins us: you are watching "morning joe." ♪ [ male announcer ] a car has a rather small rear-view mirror, so we can occasionally glance back at where we've been. it has an enormous windshield so we can look ahead to where we are going. now is always the time to go forward.
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. >> i am not running. this is a man of great integrity and looking out for what he believes is the best interest of our church. i admire him for it. it has been 713 or so years since anyone has done that. he sets an incredibly high standard. >> good morning. it's 8:00 a.m. on the east coast and 5:00 on the west coast. here in washington, michael steel and mark halpern. take a good catholic from new orleans. you can talk about the pope. >> i speak pope.
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>> you speak pope and i guess your mom was ambassador to the vatican in the 90s. that ain't nothing. >> no, we got to go to rome all the time and got to meet the pope, then john paul ii. my murtha found herself representing bill clinton to the pope. >> how exciting for her. >> it was a challenge. >> somebody said the most modernizing thing this pope did was retire. to get out of the way. could it be in this modern age that a pope can't afford to be seen frail and weakened in the 24-7 news cycle. are we moving beyond the days? >> that's not necessarily true. john paul felt strongly he
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wanted the world to see him in a sickened state. that was humanity. he was setting an example of someone who was frail and feeble and carrying on. i think this pope decided to set a different example and we will see what it means. does it mean future popes have to be pushed out and has influence after a new pope is named? nobody knows. we are in uncharted waters here. >> michael duffy will write the pope's club now. a retired pope. >> different hide aways. >> the nuns will get better food and that will work for them. >> let's talk about the state of the union address and never really needing anything unless you are bill clinton and come in in the middle of the scandal with monica lewinsky and a 59%
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approval rating. i think he went on for 14 years and i said tell me when it's over. i slept for an hour and i got up and said he's got to be done and he's still going on. his approval ratings jumped 10 percentage points. that should have been our first clue. stay away. what can the president do to move into divided washington. >> two new elements to try to breakthrough and not have it be a speech that is analyzed overnight. one is the grass roots organization. no president tried something like this before. it may not work. the scale is bigger and the thought behind it is bigger and if he is able to take the messages up, target members of congress that they need to get. >> is it guns or he doesn't need
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to waste it on immigration. >> he said jobs. >> i think everything he talks about will have a piece of advocacy. this is his first state of the union in this new term. even though i don't have hard reporting on it. >> i heard him being optimistic. >> i think he will try to change the dynamic with the speech tonight. >> on entitlements. if you don't do something -- this is what the white house has been putting out. if you don't do something about them, it will crowd out everything else. that becomes the argument. >> do you think he will say that? >> yeah, i do. >> that's what i don't understand about liberals. i'm serious. it seems liberals should want to reform middle class entitlements
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more than conservatives. when you do that, you don't have to steal from medicaid and welfare programs and food stamps. for the poorest of americans. i'm curious what you think. medicare, nothing wrong with medicare. >> he's got all these bloggers eating cheetos. what we have here is conservatives denying science and liberals who are denying math. i don't know what's worse. it's laughable and they are dead wrong. >> bill clinton said that. when he became president he was appalled that his advisers said to him you have got to get this deficit in check otherwise it's note going to be able to do the programs you want to expand. >> liberals don't seem to get that. >> you put honest democrats in the white house.
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>> they are elected two years ago. >> honest democrats will say we are draws these lines because we have to. we are willing to compromise. are republicans willing to compromise? a semi grand bargain where you do something that involves democrats and taking on their constituencies. i think the president will talk about that. >> what do republicans talk about so they don't look like bob newhart's two cousins. darrell and darrell. >> bobby jindal wanted the brightest and you put them responding to the president and take about the greatest home field advantage. what do we do tonight? >> i don't think he will look or sound like that. obviously it's going to be a play on immigration and it's going to be hopefully an economic response.
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the president has said we have to do something about entitlements, but the question is what? what are you willing to put on the table? a specific direction towards a policy. that's what they will look for. they have an opportunity to frame this argument. this economic argument. the economy is sluggish and you can frame that argument. we take your laundry list you laid odd and give us the bill. we will wait for it and embrace it and work with you and the senate democrats to get it done, but give us the bill. >> i think the speech is going to be in spanish and we won't know. >> i think people should give it up.
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>> everybody is cheering and great and some guy with a teleprompter in a room and it just doesn't work. >> will he look at the right camera tonight? >> it says look here. how many times do the washington generals pebeat them. >> and only crusty the clown. >> i don't want to jinx senator rubio, but i think he will be more than fine and i think he will do what eric kantor did. the one thing the republicans seem to do is you have to talk about the real lives of the real people and connect the policies up to do that. that's about the thing i think he is best at and talk about policies. >> i think the great thing for
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the republicans tonight is the fact that you have two people that support immigration reform and will be talking tonight. we hammered mitt romney and rand paul. and marco rubio. >> that's my point. you will have rubio give a response to the president. this is the problem. does this make any sense to have a bifurcated message to come out tonight? the fact of the matter is you have two images in contrast to the president of the united states as cokie put out and the split message, i don't know how they coordinate. >> we are a split party. >> we are, but it's supposed to be unified. >> right now we have half of the party. it was like the conservative movement from 60 to 64 who
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decided we would rather lose with gold water than win with nixon or win with rockefeller. that is you talked to a lot of people and a lot of my friends who would much rather lose. >> if that's the motive going forward and he's always going to pivot off of what we see on the screen. this screen that gives him the advantage. >> cokie, compare where the republican party is. i know you were in kindergarten in the 60s so you don't remember this, but let's compare to where it was from 60 to 68. >> what many of the people in the conservative movement at the time and it was a movement, they would say we lost in 64, but it laid the ground work for the reagan victory and that was a
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republican party that we were proud of. as opposed to the weak imitation of the democrats they considered rockefeller and nixon. they think it was a success. if you look right now at where the party is and where the people are, it doesn't add up. talk about math, the republican party is the party of white guys and michael. >> and marco rubio. >> you can't make a party on that. you can't do it. when ronald reagan was elected in 1980, white men were 46% of the electorate. you can add a few people of color and women and get a majority. now you can't.
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>> you look at the comparisons between george h.w. bush's tallies compared to now and it is a radically different country and moving further away from the republican party of the 1980s. it is a question of what do we do. is it possible this party continues to split apart? >> it's a very real possibility and tonight is say glaring example of that split. it depends on how deep it runs to cokie's point. do we resolve ourselves to get it done quicker and get around these ideas that are principaled positions for the port to take or do we go through the social and fiscal conservatives and national security conservatives? i say we found it in 2009 and 2010. the coalitions we need around the country and put them to work
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around a common idea. whether on health care or the economy. that dissipated and the rnc walked away and they are trying to come become with some messaging and doing a tour and they are tone def to what's going on out there. people are tolling what they want. >> they make people feel unwelcome. you had marco rubio on the stage at the republican convention, but you had joe arpaio from arizona who is such an advocate of the immigration laws and people advocating for them. you had the voting id laws. people are made to feel unwelcome and you combine that with legitimate rape and you have driven off everybody. >> don't forget what virginia tried to pass.
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let's see how that helps you in the suburbs of washington. north korea state media said they successfully detonated a nuclear device to coincide tonight. the report said the underground test was the most powerful to date and imposed by the united nations to find earlier resolutions. we have the chief correspondent and jim, what are you hearing at pentagon? >> u.s. intelligence officials knew it was coming although they didn't know the exact timing. this one set off alarm bells, particularly because of the size of the blast. we are not relying on cl ing oi here. they said it was somewhere about 6 or 7 kilotons that could make it from to six times more
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powerful than a previous weapon. they did claim they did this with a much smaller warhead which would indicate perhaps it's making progress that could be put on the top of a missile that could be launched against the u.s. quite frankly that's impossible to prove. within minutes it seemed after the blast was reported, the white house responded and president obama called it a highly provocative act that undermines stability and threatens u.s. national security and the president said it demands swift and credible action by the international community, but everything comes to a halt. north korea is sanctioned out at this point and unless china decides to cutoff oil supplies and other goods to north korea, it appears there is no stopping
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the regime at this point. >> what's china's response? immediate neighbors to the west and the blast with china being a lot more concerned about setting off nuclear device than here in the united states. they are literal low in the shadow of china. any response from china or belief in the pentagon that china will step up and exert more pressure on the north korea koreans? >> one of the biggest fears in the region on the part of the united states is it will spark a regional nuclear arms race with south korea and japan. no sign they are doing their own yet, but we go back to china. the only thing that might make this a little different is china leaned heavily on north korea
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not to conduct this test. for north korea to do this is in your face. there may be a more aggressive response, but nobody is coming. this should once and for all did she hope that is the international community had. this 29-year-old kim jung un would be different than his father, kim jung il. he had exposure to the west and expose than his father. she hell bent on developing nuclear weapons and technology that could reach the united states. nobody is shivering in their boots at the pentagon yet, but they are on track. >> it could be a game changer. words you don't like to say. in your face, beijing.
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if china is telling them not to do this, maybe it changes this time. otherwise they are on china and what they do there. the south korea election there. incredible concern that there ties between north korea and iran. the nuclear programs as well. >> it comes the a time in the midst of changing our team in this country. they have the former vice president going out and saying that it's a weak team and i think it's a scary moment. >> the president is expected to ask for more tax revenue and fewer tax cuts. can his plan pass congress? we will ask the national economic council, joan sperling and josh grin and bloomberg
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views mark carlson. hopefully they brought us money. here's a check on the forecast. bill. >> the magic of tv. winder storm warnings continue from oklahoma. i-40 is the place to watch. we have a winter weather advisory around oklahoma city you are getting rain and on the back we change over to snow. maybe 4 at the most. it's not pretty. heavy snow to i-40. as far as the snow accumulations. by texas standards this is a big deal. mardi gras and on and off rain in new orleans. showers by atlanta and finally a nice beautiful diin the northeast. calm winds skpo into the 40s.
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snow in d.c. and a the middle of the country no problem. the big headline, a possibility of another east coast storm, maybe a large powerful storm saturday into sunday. yesterday looked like it was going to hug the coast, but today it shows signs of a little further offshore. i will track it, but it's something we need to watch. all the better off the coast. let's hope it stays that way. you are watching "morning joe" brewed by starbucks. i'm a conservative investor. but that doesn't mean i don't want to make money. i love making money. i try to be smart with my investments. i also try to keep my costs down.
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>> the president of the united states! >> it's a tradition as old as the office. the president's declaration of the state of our union. a constitutionally mandated opportunity to lay out the vision for the nation. >> despite our hardships, our union is strong. >> the state of our union is strong. >> our resolve is firm and our union is strong. >> my fellow americans, the state of our union is strong. >> harry truman was the first to deliver the state of the union and lyndon johnson brought it to prime time.
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only 16 presidents delivered a second state of the union and tonight barack obama will face a difficult landscape. some call it the second term curse. like the curse of the bambino, it's for the past century. richard nixon called for working together in his 1974 address, a year after his landslide reelection. >> i want you to know that i have no intention whatever of ever walking away from the job the people elected me to do. >> instead two months later, nixon owned up to his roll n watergate and eventually resigned. ronald reagan was swept into a second term with a 49-state landslide. >> there no constraints and no walls around the human spirit
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and no barriers. >> many of the second term plans fell to the wayside as his administration was consumed. in 1997 after leading americans through four years of economic growth, president clinton promised something that hasn't been done in three decades. >> we must keep the economy the strongest in the world and have an historic opportunity. let this congress be the congress that finally balances the budget. >> with the help of congress, he did. tonight another stares down ghosts of the past, hoping to find a new way forward for an uncertain nation. and joining us now from the white house, director of the national economic council, gene sperling.
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columnist and senior national corresponde correspondent, josh green and michael steele. >> what is the president going to say tonight that will get people back and back to work. >> we are not setting him up. >> not for failure at all. especially on the issue of getting america back to work. >> the president is going to talk about the things we need to do to make united states the magnet for job creation that we need to be in the global economy. that is going to mean calling for bipartisan effort to go further on reducing the deficit and he will say that's not all we have to do. we have to have innovation and manufacturing and the energy future. these are all part of the ingredients with skills to the type of higher wage growth and
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he will make clear we have made progress. the deficit has come down, but not far enough. he will also make clear we have a lot further to go. we will work and be willing to compromise to make that progress for little class americans. >> while we were talking, we showed a poll about the most important issues facing america. 55% of americans say the economy and 55% if you had the economy say those are the most pressing social issues well below that. reducing the deficit is important to all americans. how specifically will he get tonight to talk to what cuts need to be made? >> i think he will make at least three points.
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we have as ugly as it has been, we have cut the deficit and the majority of that has been through spending cuts. there have been rev you ins on the top 1%. he will make clear we need to go further to get the deficit reduction that we need to do and he will make a call for bipartisanship and compromise. he will be clear we need to do smart entitlement reform and having sensible savings. he will stress it has to be done in a balanced way that means you could raise some revenues through closing loopholes as part of tax reform and try to suggest that this type of bipartisan compromise where you focus on both spending cuts and revenues together. if we follow that path we can avoid the harsh impacts on the
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economy and shut down and threats of default that we think will only happen if people take an ideological position and say we can't have a single penny and all deficit reduction can only come from training and that's not the balanced approach the president supports. i don't think it's the type of approach the public sports. they want us to compromise and they want cuts and want tax reform that lowers the deficit. >> in closing, do you think america has or washington has a spending problem? the question was asked to nancy pelosi and she said no. most americans would disagree. what's your position and the president's position? >> i think we made a lot of progress. it has come down significantly. we think it has further to go
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and smart entitlement reform has to be part of that. a lot of that is due to the baby boom retirement. that doesn't mean we should slash it and take away the fundamental guarantee. we should do more harm to seniors than we need to be because they are taking a position that you can't have a penny of revenue. we believe that you have to bring down future spending and we need to do it in a balanced way. that means revenues on loopholes and expenditures and making sure it's part of an overall plan that gives this recovery momentum and creates jobs and invest in the future in research and skills and in the things that made us productive. >> gene, thank you. you have a lot in this morning and i am a priest of the
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balanced approach thaw are talking about. i think if the president follows that, it is a balanced approach. talking about closing loopholes and most americans would support that. >> the question is how to get it done. even gene said bringing down spending. you have to believe we are spending too much and that we have a problem. we have this great conversation. did you guys see the conversation we had? it was fantastic. it was great tv. >> that's what this is. >> very diplomatic. >> no, i loved having him on because it's always fascinating talking to paul. i really, really love it. >> when he gets to his laptop, like super man. outcomes the suit. here's the problem. you have paul writing about
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jonathan who is writing about you. three or four people think we don't have a spending problem and they are writing in circles. republicans don't believe in science and liberals don't believe in math. both ways not good. we have a deficit for four years, we have a spending problem. >> it doesn't need to be confronted now. you have the forecast that came out who said it's falling. we should have a party if it
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passes. >> that's still something that has tow get packled. and republicans would like a combination of factors. it's not an immediate government spending problem. >> that's what i say on this show every day. we don't want to adopt it, but the president sounds like that and we don't want to plan ahead. >> people like steve ratner and not a right winger. >> i think mika finds it sexy. >> i think you said that. that's right. i remember the opening to the show.
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>> she out training on that. >> and the consensus around that. >> if i were a democrat, i would acknowledge a spending problem just for the politics. it seems crazy not to. $845 billion sounds better than 1.3 trillion. you get a b in there. billion. anything if the billions sounds better than the trillions. it has to be recognized. the three degrees of separation. i guess he has cut outs there. >> he's got two or three people on his side. he claims to have more, but other people he claims to have agree that deficits are not the problem. the long-term debt is the problem. >> jobs are the problem. the point that crosses the line. >> two problems. >> we don't know how much longer
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we carry this type of debt. most of the governments have it. we are hit by a crisis at the same time we are hit by that. >> the u.s. can borrow at low interest rates, but that becomes a problem. you have tomorrow. probably not. >> hold on. here in is the difference. josh touched on it. we will worry and the people that agree with him in the world say we will worry about this debt when medicare collapses. we can borrow it. i wouldn't allow my child to borrow. you will get interest rates and we can borrow money. joey, does it go up to 3%. this is no way to plan the future or plan for the future in
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america. >> that mind set that all of a sudden the ceo makes a forecast in january that the deficit will be 140 something billion necessary the year in january. we have no budget on the table and any clear path for the president. let's see what that is. then we can talk about the deficit. >> it can grow the economy. we can grow our way out of the deficits. >> you cannot have a conversation and what's playing here. >> it's an amazing thing. most mammals can do two things at one time. bears worry about eating and packing up for the winter.
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we will grow the tax cuts and the spending and take care of everything down the road. we saw with jack kemp, it didn't happen. >> politicians can do two things at once. >> stay with us. >> very frustrating. we will continue this conversation. >> a former army sergeant is decorated with the highest military honor for his bravery. his young son steals the show. this is coming up next. scalpel.
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this reduced sodium soup says it may help lower cholesterol, how does it work? you just have to eat it as part of your heart healthy diet. step 1. eat the soup. all those veggies and beans, that's what may help lower your cholesterol and -- well that's easy [ male announcer ] progresso. you gotta taste this soup.
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a former army sergeant became the fourth living soldier from afghanistan to receive the medal of honor. the 31-year-old was recognized by president obama yesterday for defending a u.s. outpost. he helped save his former troops. >> there many lessons. one of them is that our troops should never ever be put in that
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position. that's what they did for each other and sacrificed. >> a beautiful ceremony and not to be outdone by his sad. president obama said he was racing around the oval office as well. look how cute. coming up next, business before the bell. we'll be right back.
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when she's happy, she writes about bunnies. when she's sad, she writes about goblins. [ balloon pops, goblin growling ] she wrote a lot about goblins after getting burned in the market. but she found someone to talk to and gained the confidence to start investing again. ♪ and that's what you call a storybook ending. it's not rocket science. it's just common sense. from td ameritrade. >> if we finish higher this
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week, it will be the fertile time since 1987 that the market his begun with seven straight up weeks that we were trying for. we will wait to see what the president has to say. barclay's cutting 3700 jobs and put ethics before earnings and see if that happens. the ceo will run the koinltry. if it's done, shameless plug. kate upton will be in studio at 1:45 today. >> that is just -- >> i want to blow your blind. i'm a virginia guy.
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it's something about finance. >> i'm a business geek. that turns me on just as much. >> you have an unbelievably titled piece for progressives like myself. you don't think the president can do much? >> all the singles we got. obama will come out and talk about jobs and the economy. two subjects from the inauguration address and his route to doing something about that will be to go around congress. >> that's a downer. >> i spent yesterday quizzing and saying what can the president do? the answers range from nothing to not very much. he has the same challenge he always had. >> the sweet spot between them. we'll be right back. mine was earned in djibouti, africa, 2004.
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